First Three Q Graders from Myanmar


New Q Graders from left to right: Khun Tun Kyi, Javier Phua, Sai Wan Maing

This project is made possible USAID/Value Chains for Rural Development Project (VC-RD), a 5-year project funded by USAID and implemented by Winrock International. VC-RD is working to contribute to USAID/Burma’s Feed the Future goal of supporting inclusive smallholder agriculture modernization and decreasing poverty. Coffee Quality Institute (CQI) is an implementing partner, providing technical assistance and training in quality coffee production and market linkages.

After more than six decades of political and social  isolation, Myanmar is now able to improve upon their agricultural practices, improve the quality of their coffee to meet international standards  and let the world a taste their coffee.

The course was held in Ywangan in Myanmar’s Shan State. It was taught by CQI’s Q Instructor Dr. Luz Stella Artajo , and included 18 studenets from companies such as Mandalay Coffee Group, Winrock International, Gentleman Coffee Roasters, Sithar Coffee Co., Green Land Coffee Plantation, and Arrow Brothers Agriculture Co. Myanmar’s first three certified Q Graders are committed to advancing their country’s place in the global specialty coffee market. . The very fact that this course was held shows that the country has taken the first steps to developing its potential as a major supplier of arabica coffees.

Luz Stella feels that, “The willingness to learn more about coffee along with kindness, availability, and accessibility were an integral part of every day during the training. The 10 days we shared laid the foundation to have a specialized group of people with the skills and knowledge to identify the best coffees, score them according to international standards, and speak a common language of quality,  interacting with clients around the world to maximize potential.”

Myanmar is expected to be part of the world’s specialty coffee landscape very soon, creating pathways to prosperity for the coffee producers and industry, despite all of the challenges (social, economic, and environmental) the country has to face each year. For that reason, people are preparing themselves to produce coffees that will be competitive in the world market. This opportunity for coffee growers, quality control managers, roasters, and baristas to know and evaluate the quality of the coffee produced each year using the Q Coffee System is an open door to the world.



“It was a privilege to be the first instructor to lead a Q Course in Myanmar and get to know not only the incredible workforce, but also the agricultural resources that make this coffee land special. I also had the chance to taste coffees and confirm the potential for them to be positioned in the specialty sector.”



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